In The Pink presents “Below the Surface”, Philipp Keel’s first exhibition in Portugal, gathering a wide selection of the artist’s works from the past two decades.

Keel's luminous and colour-intense photographs celebrate the pleasure and strange beauty of random details and objects. They are filled with tension, are often ironic and oscillate between surrealism and realism. His art is about portraying a state of calmness to a degree that is somewhat melancholic. It is about the absurdity of the ordinary, whose beauty we often overlook, which he makes visible again. For him alienation as an aesthetic instrument, is not only content but method. He changes the apparent reality through willful surge, distortion, but also reduction – Keel suggests reality to sensitize the observer’s view.

Philipp Keel immerses himself in the microcosm of everyday life, and when he finally comes across a motif, usually in an inconspicuous place, he doesn’t let it go. That's the moment when he wants to capture it with an almost obsessive determination. Out of sheer coincidence he intuitively transforms it into fascinating abstract works with a sense of harmony.

This unconventional artistic ability enables Keel to create visual experiences from almost bizarre trivialities. The level of abstraction is always brought to a point, in which the reception and the subjective assimilation of the shown, including its (un)real appearance, is being possible without hindrance. In his series "Watermelon Seeds", his technique and visual language enable him to compose an artwork with delicate arranged colours and shapes from the banal structures of a melon and its seeds. The usual becomes unusual through the lens of his camera.

The seemingly random moments define Keel’s work and teach the viewer to take a fresh look, to remain curious.

Philipp Keel, “Crow, 2010”. Courtesy of the artist and In The Pink, Loulé

Philipp Keel studied at Berklee College of Music in Boston and at Academy for Film and Television in Munich before working in various artistic disciplines in the USA for twenty years. His photographs, paintings, aquarelles, drawings and screen prints have been shown in international exhibitions and are represented in leading collections. With his bestsellers All About Me and All About Us (Random House, 1998/2000), his comprehensive Imbue Prints Series in Color (Steidl, 2004), with Splash (Steidl, 2015), Last Summer (Steidl, 2021) and the series Keel's Simple Diary (TASCHEN, 2009/2011), he became known worldwide.

Most recently, his work was on display with Coincidences (2023) at Grisebach in Berlin.

Philipp Keel lives and works in Switzerland and Italy.

Philipp Keel, Courtesy of the artist and In The Pink, Loulé - copyright Franco Tettamanti

Exhibition Below the Surface, Philipp Keel

In The Pink, Gallery for Fine Photo Art

29th of March 2024

Tuesday to Friday, from 11am to 7pm, and Saturdays, from 10am to 2pm

Praça da República 69-75, 8100-270 Loulé